Awford: Posh show has no bearing on U’s line-up

Ricky Holmes Picture: Joe Pepler
Ricky Holmes Picture: Joe Pepler
Matty Kennedy. Picture: Joe Pepler

Pompey 1 Southend 0: They said what

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Pompey’s much-changed side pulled off a surprise Capital One Cup victory against Peterborough during the week.

But Andy Awford has revealed his players’ displays that night have no bearing on tomorrow’s team selection.

That is because the Blues manager had already decided his line-up to face Cambridge United before Tuesday night’s 1-0 triumph.

Awford made six changes for that Fratton Park encounter, with the likes of Miles Storey, Nigel Atangana, Paul Robinson and Alex Wynter shining on their full debuts.

Joe Devera and Dan Butler also came into the side who toppled their League One opponents.

Yet Awford had already plotted his team for tomorrow’s visit of the U’s.

He said: ‘I have long known my team for Saturday, barring any injuries or suspensions picked up on Tuesday.

‘That hasn’t changed, that was plotted earlier on in the week.

‘The old cliche of one game at a time is true, but if you are not planning then you are not doing your job properly.

‘You have got to have a little look to see what’s coming. The fixtures are thick and fast for everybody at the moment, not just us, it’s bang, bang.

‘So I picked it before Tuesday and that is the group mentality I have in the squad.

‘It would be easy to put that same XI out there tomorrow because they played so well and say “Go on then, same again”.

‘But if I don’t and leave out a couple or four or eight at least they understand it’s because I want to do it for that particular game. They might be back in for the next week.

‘So it’s all about the group mentality and making sure everybody understands what we are doing as a whole squad.

‘It’s not just about 15/16 players playing regularly, it’s about everybody being in it together and united – and that is what they are.

‘The whole squad are all in it and have a part to play.’

Meanwhile, Wynter is a doubt for the U’s game, but Ricky Holmes is in the frame.

Awford added: ‘Wynter didn’t train, he is still with the physios after his knock on the head and we will assess him in the morning.

‘Storey trained and is raring to go, and Ricky trained. He’s has had a nice week’s training and is available for selection.

‘Of those injured, Pat (Agyemang) is the closest to returning, probably next week back into training,

‘Easty (Danny East) still has issues with his groin which is a problem. It still isn’t going away at the moment.’